Your Eyewitness is very disappointed – but not really surprised – about the continuous harping on “race” as the explanatory variable for anything perceived negatively happening in Guyana. In fact, if these accounts are to be believed, race isn’t a variable any longer in our dear mudland, but a constant! Fella gets robbed as he staggers home from the rum shop? Race! Cocaine discovered in salt fish? Race! Never mind about the cocaine in the vagina.
And we arrive at some of the dismissals and disavowals by the PPP, ever since they were grudgingly allowed to take office five months after they were voted in. “Race”! Your Eyewitness knows we don’t have much experience with change of Governments in Guyana and the ensuing transitions. After all, the PNC under Burnham and Hoyte rigged their way into power for almost three decades until finally the latter was forced to allow “free and fair” elections.
But we saw at that point, the appearance of the new explanatory variable of race for everything political and sociological. Even before the election was called, Hamilton Green, insisted that the “white man” Jimmy Carter, was bent on ousting the PNC. Why? Well, duh – race! Carter was just another “Redneck” from the US Deep South who had it in for Blacks! And as the PPP attempted to govern and was forced to get rid of some of the “square pegs in round holes” that had accumulated over the previous 28 years (and brought governance to a halt), there came the cries of “ethnic cleansing”!! Race! Never mind that the said square pegs were all from the PNC’s African-Guyanese constituency who were recruited to augment the already African- skewed Public Service. This had been proven by a survey conducted by the ICJ in 1965.
And never mind that Hoyte had fired more (African) Public Servants in his five years, at the behest of the IMF than the PPP would do over the course of the 23 years they’d govern Guyana! But not Race! This would be screamed at the top of the PNC’s lungs at every step of the way in those PPP years. House lots at Paradise? “Race!” cried Hamilton Green. Land at Boerasirie? Race! cried Hoyte. 1997 elections? Race! And, of course, this justified beatings, arson and murders of Indian-Guyanese for the next decade! Not race! How dare they support the “racist” PPP?
Which is now back, and have to be racist! Like with Trevor Benn from the GL&SC who was let go and charged for assuming powers that were never delegated to him to sell land that were not even under his authority!
But really: what’s race got to do with it?
But while the PNC and their camp followers are shouting “race” from the rooftops –- which in this era have gravitated into the skies via social media! – they’re deliberately ignoring — or more likely deliberately provoking – the almost inevitable consequence if they continue. To wit, the explosion that occurred after the 1997 elections. The parallels are uncanny: the elections are contested and the PNC insist “we wuz robbed!” – this time with the help of the racists who are killing blacks in the US.
And the same cries of “others being enriched” while their supporters get nothing. One rabble rouser keeps harping that they don’t have a Bank. But what’s stopping them from obtaining the necessary licence from the BoG by showing they have $250 million paid-up capital and trained personnel in banking. Have they ever applied and been turned down? They should not be fazed by the example of Globe Trust. That failed because of greed not competence.
But how about Citizens Bank? Isn’t that being run by a brother?
With Guyana open for business and finally having something the Multi-National Corporations (MNCs) can get their teeth into, shouldn’t the umbrella trade union bodies bury the hatchet and form a united front?
What was that about “divided we fall” ?